T.J. Dillashaw received an unexpected opportunity of a lifetime after he was yanked from his fight against Takeya Mizugaki at UFC 173 and placed into the headlining spot opposite Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) bantamweight titleholder, Renan Barao.
Admittedly surprised (and stoked) upon receiving the news, Dillashaw says on May 24, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada, it's going to be time to deliver after getting a title shot sooner than expected.
And when he faces one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in mixed martial arts (MMA), he plans to shock the combat sports world, much like Chris Weidman did when he defeated Anderson Silva at UFC 162.
His words to MMA Weekly:
"Right now he's got the longest win streak in MMA history. He could be pound-for-pound the best in the world and it's going to be sweet to beat him. It's like when Weidman beat Silva, he (Silva) was untouchable, right? I mean, who did Weidman beat? What was his record? He beat some good guys, but it wasn't on Silva's level. Right? So, it's going to be awesome to prove that."
Rafael Assuncao -- the last man to defeat Dillashaw -- was the leading candidate to face Barao next, however, lingering injuries kept him on the sidelines.
Dillashaw is fresh off a unanimous decision victory over Mike Easton at UFC Fight Night 35 last January. Prior to that, "The Viper" had won four of six inside the Octagon.
Barao, meanwhile, recently defended his 135-pound title for the fourth consecutive time by defeating T.J.'s Team Alpha male stablemate, Urijah Faber, for the second time at UFC 169. The win brought Renan's winning streak to an astounding 32 straight.
Eat your heart out, Fedor.
Can Barao extend that streak to 33 in a row this Memorial Day Weekend? Or will Dillashaw live up to his words and end the most impressive run in MMA today?